Non-representative ambivalence

Ethan Bronner has a misleading article about Israel’s rescue efforts in Haiti, For Israelis, Mixed Feelings on Aid Effort

While the article points to a few op-eds expressing pride at Israel’s efforts (and dismay at the worldn’t cynical criticisms of Israel), Bronner inexplcably quotes from Larry Derfner and Akiva Eldar to demonstrate the “mixed feelings” felt by Israelis. I understand that moral grey areas are all the rage in newspaper reporting, but Derfner and Eldar are hardly representative of the Israeli population. To present them to “balance” the pride Israeli feel towards their country’s achievement is dishonest.

Derfner, quoted by Bronner, wrote:

It’s the Haiti side of Israel that makes the Gaza side so inexpressibly tragic. And more and more, the Haiti part of the national character has been dwarfed by the Gaza part.

This is sophistry. It is the Haiti, ( and Turkey, and India etc.) side of Israel that demonstrates Israel’s good faith as a nation. Israel’s attacks against Gaza are not arbitrary exercises in cruelty as Derfner suggests. Rather they are actions taken in self defense.

Eldar’s despicable column, as reported by Elder of Ziyon, has been reproduced in many anti-Israel websites, including that of Hamas.

In other words, in order to show the ambivalence of Israeli society, Bronner used two extreme leftists to show doubts among Israelis. But neither Eldar nor Derfner is reprsentative of Israeli society. To present them in the way Bronner did was extremely misleading. In his attempt to demonstrate ambivalence in Israel, Bronner effectively showed his own ambivalence about Israel’s right to defend itself.

Crossposted on Yourish.

About Soccerdad

I'm a government bureaucrat with delusions of literacy.
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8 Responses to Non-representative ambivalence

  1. anon says:

    This is typical of Israel bashers.

    All Jewish Israelis are EVIL so anything they do that might be considered positive is a mere public relations stunt. Their evil blockade of Gaza – abetted by the Egyptians so THEY don’t lose US military aid – is far worse than anything humanity has ever done to anyone else.

    Of course the editors of Haaretz eat this stuff up.

    The truth, of course, is much different.

    Israels’ strategic position is strong. And growing stronger by the day. Which is why the Israel bashers are in full panic mode.

    By the way, all readers here should track down what the newest US Senator has to say about the on going war against Israel. Bravo Massachusetts!

    That’s not to say that Sen. Kennedy was even a bit anti-Israel. After all, one of his older brothers was murdered by a Palestinian terrorist.

  2. Alex Bensky says:

    They might have a point if Haitians were constantly trying to murder Israelis and the Israeli border had to be fenced off because Haitians with mayhem on their minds were constantly trying to sneak across and blow up Israelis. I don’t think that’s happening.

    All the Gazans have to do is say verifiably that they are going to stop killing Israelis and trying to destroy Israel and the barriers would be down. Meanwhile, there was that girl from Gaza a few years ago, can’t remember her name, who had received kind and effective treatment in a Beersheba hospital and repaid that by trying to blow up the hospital. If there’s anyone who is the emblem for Palestinians, especially from Gaza, she’s it.

  3. Gary Rosen says:

    “Ethan Bronner has a misleading article about Israel”

    In other startling developments today, the sun rose in the East and Pope Benedict revealed his adherence to the Roman Catholic faith.

  4. Happy and Proud says:

    Thank for writing about this, Meryl. I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw the article. It’s just like Bronner to take something wonderful that Israel has done and twist it around to ‘prove’ his anti-Israel prejudice. The really sad thing is that many people believe that the Times is an objective and accurate source of information, instead of the rag that it is.

  5. It’s actually not my post, it’s Soccerdad’s, one of my co-bloggers.

  6. Soccerdad says:


    FWIW, Bronner, in general has been better than most correspondents.

    David aka Soccer Dad

  7. Gary Rosen says:

    “Bronner, in general has been better than most correspondents.”

    Yeah, I guess he’s better than Neon Deion Nissenbaum who glorified the baby-killing Kuntar. It’s kinda like saying Charles Manson wasn’t as bad as Ted Bundy.

  8. i hate the fact that usa presses israel that much in all questions and at the same time they cant prevent serious threat

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